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Sculpture of s. XIX, commissioned for the Louvre court in 1831, then destined for the Tuileries garden in 1832. Exposed to the Tuileries garden from 1835 to 1993. Pradier is a neoclassical sculptor influenced by the romantic current and an elegant and sensual art. He is credited with a certain talent but also with a brutal and vain nature, always seeking to dazzle his interlocutors. Appointed professor at the School of Fine Arts, Officer of the Legion of Honor, James Pradier obtains many official orders where he celebrates the human body. Very popular, he enjoys a great reputation; a whole society of musicians, poets, writers, politicians, frequent his studio.
Since patronage is no longer in the hands of the great aristocratic families whose fortune was stifled by the Revolution, artists must turn to the state and the big cities. Pradier used it under the Restoration and especially under the July Monarchy. He takes advantage of the official benevolence of King Louis-Philippe (ill 9) and Queen Marie-Amélie (ill 11), without really penetrating the circle of the faithful of the royal entourage, having a declared enemy in the person painter and sculptor Ary Scheffer, professor of sculpture of Princess Marie d'Orléans. In spite of everything, he is commissioned to execute several statues or busts of their son, Ferdinand, Duke of Orleans (ill 10), died accidentally in July 1842.
It is true that his talent and his network of friends in the higher administration serve him. He took advantage of his good relations with the count of Cailleux, general secretary then director in 1841 of the Royal Museums. It will be the same, after the fall of the July Monarchy, with his successor the Count of Nieuwerkerke, sculptor himself and sculpture lover.